In 1983, the Department of Trade and the Department of Industry were combined to form a new Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). This new department combined the functions of the previous Department of Industry with the commercial relations and trade functions of the Department of Trade. The DTI also gained responsibility for radio frequency regulation from the Home Office, whilst responsibility for civil aviation and shipping was transferred to the Department of Transport.
In 1984, the DTI assumed direct control of the Radio Interference Service from British Telecom. This service was subsequently renamed the Radio Investigation Service. In 1985, the DTI gained responsibility for issues relating to reclamation and recycling of waste. In September of 1985 the responsibilities for Small Firms, Small Firms Centres and Tourism were transferred to the Department for Employment. In 1986 the Board of Trade met as part of the bicentenary celebrations of the establishment of the Board. In July 1987, the Enterprise and Deregulation Unit and Inner Cities Unit were transferred from the Department of Employment to the DTI.
On 12 January 1988, the then Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, Lord Young, announced a new role for the DTI in a white paper entitled 'DTI - the Department for Enterprise'. The following departmental reorganisation caused the industry divisions to be replaced by market divisions, which were organised by sector, and covered a wider range of activities. On 3rd October 1988, Companies House was launched as an Executive Agency of the DTI. In 1989 the National Weights and Measures Laboratory, Warren Spring Laboratory and the Laboratory of the Government Chemist were launched as Executive Agencies.
In 1990, the new Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, Nicholas Ridley announced a further reorganisation following the conclusion of the review initiated by Lord Young. The work of the DTI was grouped together in new divisions, each responsible for an overall policy theme. New divisions created included Business Task Forces, Information Technology, Manufacturing Technology, Telecommunications and Posts, Economics, Market Intelligence and Statistics. More Executive Agencies were created during the year: the Patent Office took Executive Agency status in March, followed by the Insolvency Service. The Radiocommunications Agency was launched in April, and the National Engineering Laboratory Agency was launched in October.
In March 1991, the creation of a Joint Directorate, combining staff from DTI and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) was announced. This unit marketed all export services available through DTI and FCO under the brand name 'Overseas Trade Services'. In October 1991, the first of the DTI's central services took agency status, becoming the Accounts Services Agency. At the same time, the Patent Office and Companies House moved to a new trading fund status.
On his appointment to the DTI as Secretary of State in 1992, Michael Heseltine chose to revive the title of President of the Board of Trade. On 13 April, following the 1992 General Election, it was announced that the Department of Energy would merge with the DTI.
Responsibility for Small Firms was transferred back from the Department for Employment. The Inner Cities Unit was transferred to the Department for the Environment, work on films and the export licensing of works of art to the newly created Department for National Heritage, and the Financial Services Division was transferred to the Treasury.
In July 1992, the President of the Board of Trade announced a major DTI reorganisation which reshaped the department to relate more closely to sectors of industry. Eleven new divisions were created, seven of which were sectoral divisions. In 1993, a new National Technology Centre was created from a merger of Warren Spring Laboratory, and AEA Technology.
In 1995, following government wide departmental reorganisation, the Department of Employment was merged with the Department for Education to become the Department for Education and Employment (DfEE). The DTI inherited functions relating to industrial relations from the former Employment Department, and from the Cabinet Office, the Office of Science and Technology. The Competiveness Division and Deregulation Unit were transferred from DTI to the Cabinet Office.
In 2001, responsibility for sponsorship of the nine Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) moved to the DTI from the former Department for the Environment, Transport & the Regions. The first eight RDAs (East of England; East Midlands; North East; North West; South East; South West; West Midlands; Yorkshire and the Humber) were established under the Regional Development Agencies Act 1998, and were formally launched in eight English regions on 1 April 1999. The ninth, in London, was established in July 2000 following the establishment of the Greater London Authority (GLA).
In 2007, the DTI was replaced by the new Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR), with other responsibilities passing to the new Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS).